Karen J. Foli, MSN, PhD, RN, FAAN


BSN, Indiana State University
MSN, Indiana University
PhD, University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign


Dr. Foli’s research is focused on the mental health, transitions, and challenges faced by non-traditional families (adoptive and kinship) in community settings. Her work seeks to elucidate the risks and buffers to these challenges through longitudinal data, and test interventions to improve family functioning. Her mid-range theory and subsequent research findings describe post-adoption depression faced by parents after placement of a child. Other projects include teaching/learning strategies, and quality improvement through LEAN healthcare techniques.  Her research methods include qualitative (e.g., grounded theory, phenomenology, and content analysis), quantitative, and mixed methods. She actively mentors students in a wide variety of projects, with special emphasis on mental health and families.  She brings years of clinical, research, and publication experience to each project.  Dr. Foli received the Charles B. Murphy Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award in 2015, is a Fellow in the Teaching Academy, and ​a past Service Learning Faculty Fellow; she also holds Lean Yellow Belt Certification and is a Master Trainer in Team STEPPS.

Area(s) of Specialization

Leadership in Nursing

Theoretical Constructs in Nursing

History, Ethics and Innovations of Healthcare Delivery Systems

Current CV (PDF)

Foli, Karen J.
Associate Professor
Director, PhD in Nursing Program

Phone: 765-494-4023
Office: JNSN 234
E-mail: kfoli@purdue.edu

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